From Dziadzio's diary, circa August 1941

My Mom recorded a little from her father’s story in 1975 and transcribed it afterwards. Dates and places were not always super accurate, in his story this just predates General Pavlov’s execution. We know this happened in 1941, and Pavlov was executed about a month prior to this. This is one of the very few stories from his biography where I have a distinct time and location that I can piece together. I’d like to share it, if only to say thanks to Indy, Spartacus, Astrid and the rest of the TimeGhost crew for the work you’re doing. But first, the preface he put on his own story:

This is recorded on February 2, 1975, only for my children and grandchildren. I ask you not to let anyone else listen to the tape while I’m alive, because people now-a-days are not good, or honest and hurt others, and because of this they could upset my life.
This is a true record, without lies; it is not a fable. It is a record of the things I went through during my life and possible some may not like to hear what I say, so I ask that you don’t divulge this information. At any rate, there are no “saints” on this earth and each of us have sinned much.
Now I will tell my life story.

It’s worth including because his preface shows at least a little of his fear and paranoia he carried throughout his life, as I alluded to in my post last week. ( These videos are getting harder to watch )

His role in the invasion of Iran was short and went like this:

In 1940 [sic] they took me to Heavy Artillery, and drove us to Inska; (that was Polish territory until 1939). I didn’t like military life at all and wanted to get out of it somehow. But that was impossible. At the end of 1940 [sic] Russia announced war with [Iran]. We went near Arabia and got ready for war, but we got good news because they gave up, just as we got there. That made us happy. In an hour they let us enter the city, but only 10 at a time. In the city were only women and small children; all the men went to the army and gave up to the Russians. We couldn’t touch anything. We couldn’t eat, drink (even the water), or touch the women, for all this there were great punishments - like firing squad! One night we all came back to the camp and the artillery were sent next to the German front, to meet the German enemy.

That’s it. Both anticlimactic and super-important to me in that it can pinpoint a moment in time of the war to right now, in 1941. The rest of his story is much more temporally fluid, this week is just about the only time and place I knew where he was with reasonable certainty. Frankly, I’m feeling quite depressed today thinking about how early in the war he was taken prisoner and how much he suffered over the next four or so years.

I have a precious few more stories I’ll share as the war proceeds, but I’ll be spending much of my time continuing to listen and learn, and hopefully bag one of those tie’s sometime before this damned war is over.

Now, please be good, honest, and don’t hurt others. TimeGhostArmy, I salute you.

  • Mark